Embolic Agents and Microcatheters for Endovascular Treatment of Cerebral Arteriovenous Malformations

Matthew J. Triano, Jacques Lara-Reyna, Alexander J. Schupper, Kurt A. Yaeger

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Endovascular embolization of cerebral arteriovenous malformations (AVMs) originally entailed delivery of N-butyl cyanoacrylate glue to the nidus via a flow-directed microcatheter. Within the past decade, several new liquid embolic agents and novel microcatheter technologies have become available that have improved the ease of use and efficacy of endovascular therapies for AVMs. Nonadhesive copolymers, such as Onyx and Precipitating Hydrophobic Injectable Liquid, have largely replaced N-butyl cyanoacrylate given a lower risk of catheter entrapment. The emergence of balloon microcatheters has allowed for improved protection of the normal cerebral vasculature and has improved the penetration of liquid embolics into large AVMs, ultimately reducing procedure times and radiation exposure. Finally, several detachable tip microcatheters have been developed to facilitate removal of the catheter from hardened liquid embolic cast, preventing the morbidity associated with distal catheter entrapment. This article reviews the embolic agents and microcatheters currently available for the treatment of cerebral AVMs in the United States as well as the data demonstrating the safety and efficacy of these devices.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)383-388
Number of pages6
JournalWorld neurosurgery
StatePublished - Sep 2020


  • Arteriovenous malformation
  • Catheter
  • Device
  • Endovascular
  • Liquid embolic material
  • Microcatheter
  • Technology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Clinical Neurology


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